Oil and Gas, Coal, Hard Rock Mining Mediation
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Oil and Gas, Coal, & Hard Rock Mining Mediation
 

The extraction of oil, gas, coal, and hard rock minerals requires the removal of valuable natural resources from the earth so they can be processed and delivered to consumers. The techniques for taking these minerals from the earth differ greatly, but all mineral extraction processes:

  • involve varying degrees of environmental disruption and risk due to the movement of the earth and industry-specific extraction technologies
  • require landowner permissions to explore and extract the minerals
  • require water and extraction techniques may threaten the quantity and quality of local groundwater supplies
  • require safe transportation methods to mineral processing facilities
  • include planning for reclamation at the end of the extraction process

The five bullets above grossly oversimplify the thorny technical, political, safety, financial, labor, and environmental issues. The nature of the business almost guarantees that disputes will occur, and sometimes loudly on the public stage. Mediation can help disputing parties to resolve their differences far more quickly and inexpensively than litigation.

High profile and high-stakes disputes require more preparation than simpler disputes. In advance of mediation sessions in complex and high-stakes cases the mediator may ask counsel for legal briefs and he may communicate back and forth with each party so he can understand technical, political, environmental, royalty, title, financial and/or other issues that may be relevant to the case. Sometimes the keys to success lie in difficult to understand problems and opportunities.

The mediator does not make decisions; he facilitates problem-solving discussions with the goal of reaching a binding mutually-agreeable settlement. The mediation process is confidential. With or without success, the mediator may not testify in subsequent litigation.


About Mediation:  Careful listening and studious attention to the issues allows the mediator to help craft mutually-acceptable agreements that satisfy the most fundamental needs and wants of each party. Complex mediations encompass far more than compromise. Success also involves careful preparation combined with creativity and a positive focus on the goal.   Chris Hahn, Ph.D., MBA


About the mediator: Dr. Hahnís blending of education and experience has uniquely qualified him to mediate disputes relating to natural resources. He worked directly in the industry as a landman for Conoco and as the Manager of Mineral Lands for Homestake Mining Companyís exploration division. In these roles he worked directly with land acquisition and leasing, water rights, environmental assessments and planning, corporate partnerships, and public relations. He always made every effort to use a balanced and fair approach when interacting with land owners and community stakeholders. He is a former member of the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Association.

He has worked with crews on drill rigs, excavation sites, and within active mines. He enjoys professional discussions with geologists, engineers, attorneys, government agencies, and corporate partners. He headed the on-site public relations effort for Homestake Mining Company when they announced the discovery of the McLaughlin Mine deposit in California.

His educational training provides him with a technical vocabulary, competence in the process of scientific reasoning, and interpersonal insight into human behaviors. He has a Bachelorís Degree in Geology, Masterís Degree in Business Administration, and Ph.D. in Human Services (mental health focus).



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Copyright, 2005-2012, Christopher P. Hahn, Bozeman, MT